“A good science fiction story,” Frederik Pohl tells us, “should be able to predict not the automobile, but the traffic jam.” In Japanese Science Fiction in Global Perspective, we consider the “traffic jams,” that is, the far-flung possible worlds imagined in Japanese science fiction from the early 20th-century to the present. The relationship between emerging technologies and the possibility of global communication—sending a translatable message across time and space—is central to our conversation. In order to explore both this possibility and its limits, we conclude Japanese Science Fiction in Global Perspective with a time capsule project. The time capsule includes a video essay; future generations of this class discuss and critique the video essays of their predecessors and respond with video essays of their own.
You can view a couple of our video essays by following the links below. You can also view the syllabus here.
Sam Broderson-Rodriguez on The Ghost in the Shell